Are you peaceful and calm or are your "innards" roiling and churning and anything but calm? With everything that is going on in our world today, it is easy to be discouraged or flat-out scared.
Holy cow. What's coming next?
It is enough to send stress levels and insecurities through the roof. This stress is very hard on us and results in our bodies not working efficiently- all the way down to the cellular level. This eventually leads to lots of different illnesses. Research is proving that stress is literally killing us.
Thankfully, God never intended us to live that way. We can come to him even in our very scary times, when nothing seems stable, when things around us are falling apart. Prayer is always available to God's children and peace can come from sharing our cares and concerns with God the Father.He will restore our soul.
I don't know about you, but sometimes, I just can't calm down enough to even prayer. Anyone else?
I'm so thankful that God created our bodies with a built in stress reducer. It requires no extra equipment, can be done anytime, and it is FREE.
I’m talking about the breath.
By adulthood, on average, we are taking 15 to 20 breaths per minute-three to four times faster than optimal. We hurry through our days, weeks, years, -OUR LIVES, for Pete's sake- operating from our sympathetic nervous system, taking shallow breaths from our upper lungs. Stress hormones are being continually released and we essentially are living in a state of FEAR.
Not the abundant life God has planned for us.
I love how God created the parts of our bodies to be interconnected. They are ALL affected by the breath. Our very breath is a direct GIFT from HIM. Learning to take slow complete inhales and slow complete exhales through the nose majorly affects the pituitary, the master gland that controls the rest of the glands in our bodies. Medical research is proving that deep breathing is not only relaxing, but it also affects the heart, the brain, the immune system. It is sooooo good for us.
Deep breathing helps us function from our parasympathetic nervous system-the rest and digest system. We can relax, think clearly, and respond to others from a calm space. We would feel better, and wouldn't that make all our relationships better, too?
The breath is a "common grace"- available to believers and unbelievers alike. I'm so thankful for that.
However, as a Christ follower, the breath also provides a way to commune with my Heavenly Father, as the very breath becomes a prayer for me in Holy Yoga.
I don't know about you, but I am more than ready to trade in my spirit of fear for NEW LIFE and NEW BREATH.
I hope you take some time today to sit quietly and just breath.